It’s never a bad time to start saving money. It’s even better when you save money without really having to change much of your current routine. Use these money saving hacks to help save money fast with little effort.
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Eat before leaving the house
Food is one of the largest expenses that most people have. And a lot of the money spent on food is spent out of boredom. When there’s nothing to do, most people go out to eat, because even though it ends up being a large amount of money spent at the end of the month, going out to eat with friends is often cheaper than other activities. It’s fast and easy.
So if you’re going to go out to an eatery anyway, eat before you go so that you end up getting something small, or just getting a drink.
Take a water bottle
There are two ways to save money by taking a water bottle with you everywhere. One, you won’t be as tempted to by a drink somewhere, because you already have water. Two, is you will end up eating less. Often times you think you’re hungry, you’re actually just thirsty. So by drinking water, you’ll be less likely to go out to eat, or eat as much.
Pay in cash & use large bills
You are less likely to spend your money if you are using cash, because you can physically see your money disappearing. And you’re even less likely to spend your money if you only cover large bills. Nobody wants to break a $100 bill for a drink at the gas station. Try to carry $50 or $100 bills.
Save your spare change
When you’re paying in cash, you’re always getting change. Take all of the change you receive and put it into a piggy bank of some sort. When you want to buy something you don’t really need, or want to take a vacation, use your spare change fund.
Make weekly trips to the grocery store
I know this might sound backwards, but hear me out! Giving yourself a weekly grocery limit, we’ll say $50-$100, helps you to maintain a meal plan, and help avoid wasting food. Often times, you’ll go to the grocery store intending to shop for a two week period, and use your entire budget. Then, four days in, you run out of milk, or produce, or bread, and you end up back at the store. Then you’re buying the things you need, and also things you don’t need, because it looks good at the time.
Most generic, or store brand products, are equally as good as the name brand. Sometimes they are only a few cents cheaper (which still adds up) but other times they can be quite a lot cheaper! Try testing it out and buying generic once, and see how little of a difference you notice.
Cut down on meat and cheese
Meat and cheese are both pretty expensive foods. Try having a “Meatless Monday” or picking a few days a week that you makes meatless meals. And when you do eat meat, choose a pork or chicken. It’s MUCH cheaper than beef products.
While driving to multiple stores might seem like it isn’t worth it, between the time and the gas, if the deals are good it can be totally worth it! Often times, stores that are usually considered more expensive, like health food stores, have great deals! Their produce is usually better quality for less, and they often have super good deals on products that are quite pricey, like specialty foods such as gluten free, dairy free, etc.
Spending money is an essential part of life, so take advantage of any cashback you can get. There are two programs that are great for cashback.
Ibotta: Ibotta is great for cash back on groceries. It allows you to scan your receipts and earn cash back on various products. Some are brand specific, but a lot are just “any brand milk” (or bread, or banana’s, etc.)
Ebates: Ebates is for cashback online. It’s an extension you have on your browser, and every time you make an online purchase with a qualifying store, it automatically gives you cashback.
Check Groupon first
If you’re wanting to treat yourself, find a way if there’s a way to do it cheaper. Groupon is a great place to look for local activities like concerts, massages, dinner, and a ton of other things! It’s also usually a pretty significant discount, it’s definitely worth using!
Buying things new is often times a total waste of money. Some things are worse than others by far. For instance, super expensive electronics. Someone seriously got the new iPhone, used it for a month, and then bought the even newer iPhone, and is selling their “old” one. Take advantage and buy that iPhone for $500 less than what you would pay for it if you bought it new.
Things you should buy used to save a TON of money:
- kitchen appliances
- home decor
Use re-usable products- Go green
There are so many reusable products out there that can help you to save a ton of money, plus it’s good for the environment. Win-win! Here’s a list of really cool re-usable products that can help you to replace products and save you a ton of money:
- ziploc bags
- dryer balls
- kitchen sponges
- lunch boxes
- water bottles
- plastic wrap
- laundry ball (eliminates laundry detergent)
Make unnecessary purchases at the end of the month
If there’s something you really want but don’t technically need, wait until the end of the month to see if you really have the money for it, and to ensure that you’ve already paid for all of your needs for the month.
Eat out smartly
If you’re going to eat out, do it right! There are multiple ways to save money while eating out:
- sharing a meal
- eating an appetizer
- eating half your meal and taking home the other half for another meal
- getting a kids meal
- don’t order a drink, get water
- find coupon
- go earlier in the day and take advantage of the lunch menu
- do a no-spend challenge
Do a no-spend challenge
Come up with a realistic no spend challenge. You can try going a weekend without spending, a week without spending, try not spending on Sunday’s, or you can try going a month without spending money on anything that’s not a complete necessity. Come up with a challenge that is realistic, and most beneficial for your family.
Check out these Tips for Succeeding In a No-Spend Challenge
If you need to make a somewhat large purchase, it’s best to buy it outright to avoid paying interest. For instance, if you’re rent to owning furniture, you will end up paying 2x or more for the furniture than you would if you paid for it outright. Things like furniture, electronics, cars, and a lot of other large purchases will cost you a lot more due to interest than it would if you were able to pay for it immediately.
Rent a room out
If you have an extra room, you can rent it out to make a few extra hundred bucks a month. Or, you could rent it on a daily basis using programs like AirBnB.
Put money into savings
One of the best ways to save money is to actually SAVE money. Having a savings can help you to afford random expenses that come up, like a new car, a water heater, or any car/home repair. Having money on hand will help to avoid having to get loans and spending a lot of money on interest.
Which of these money saving hacks are you going to try? Which one’s do you currently use? We hope these life hacks for saving money will help you improve your financial life!
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